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January 2017 Income Report

Happy New Year, Income Fans! I'm running behind with income reports. Not enough hours in the day! So this will be more brief than usual.

A New Year!

After a Christmassy income drop in December, I was hoping January would pick up. And it did, getting us off to a great start to the new year.

The biggest thing on my radar this month is a change that won't happen until next month, and may not show its real effect on income for a few more months after that. is moving to a new domain!

This was a tough choice to make, but having made the decision, I'm happy with it. Most people move from a non-dotcom to a dotcom, but I'm going the other way! Madness? Maybe.

The current domain is long. It's tricky to spell. It's hyphenated, and I don't own the unhyphenated version of it. It's ironically unreadable. A move of some sort was certainly a sensible idea.

So for the last few months I've been sounding out a few domain names - various dotcoms and others, to see what was available. Some names had prices I can only describe as delusional. Some people were simply not prepared to consider a sale. Some never replied to my approaches.

In the end, I had a shortlist to choose from. I put the list to the existing subscribers of the site, and a clear winner emerged - So that's where we are going to move to!

The dot io namespace is heavily used by tech companies ("io" being a techy acronym), and its use is growing fast. It's expensive, so unlike other new TLDs like .co, .biz and so on, it doesn't suffer from much of a spam problem. And "" is everything I want from a name - short, easy to remember and type, descriptive and unique. I was even able to pick up "" to redirect anyone who gets confused typing it.

In February, I'll be moving the site, and that's going to be stressful. I'm expecting some temporary damage to income in February, but as with anything to do with search engines, there are no guarantees it will be temporary. But hopefully once the dust has settled I'll be in a much stronger place with the site, on a much more memorable and flexible domain name.

And don't worry, you don't need to update your bookmarks. The old domain name will be redirected indefinitely.

In other news, I experimented with a new advertiser on Cheatography this month. They made some pretty big claims about revenue, that didn't translate to much success. I'll give them a little longer, but it's not looking promising.

Revenue - had a large overhaul in April 2016 and quickly became my highest earning website. Income comes from a premium subscription model giving access to tools and alerts, but the core functionality - measuring the readability of text - is free.

Revenue - Cheatography

Cheatography is my busiest site, and is a cheat sheet builder and repository which earns a modest income from advertising. It needs more attention than it gets, and I believe has tremendous potential. It currently has over 2400 cheat sheets, the largest collection anywhere, most of which are unique to the site.

Revenue - ApolloPad

ApolloPad is a novel-writing web app, with a monthly subscription model (when it comes out of beta). It's not earning anything yet, as it's still in relatively early development.

Revenue - CrosswordCheats

CrosswordCheats is a crossword solver and cryptic crossword clue trainer. The clue trainer bit is the bit I'm most proud of, and the piece least used. At the moment, it generates a small income through AdSense advertising, but the long-term goal is to offer a subscription for access to the best features.

Revenue Totals

Item Last Month This Month $5,820.19 $8,120.98+40%
Cheatography $734.75 $563.75-23%
Crossword Cheats $53.67 $44.07-18%
ApolloPad $0.00 $0.000%
Total $6,608.61 $8,728.80+32% Customers

I've turned the customer table into a shiny new chart, and included the customer count since I first started offering premium subscriptions on the old version of the site in 2014. It's come a long way since then!


Item Last Month This Month
Hosting - Linode -$85.00 -$85.000%
Hosting - CloudFlare -$20.00 -$20.000%
Hosting - AWS -$3.12 -$1.48+53%
Domain Names - Purchase -$700.00 $0.00+100%
Domain Names - 123-Reg $35.86 $35.860%
Domain Names - Zonomi -$1.27 -$1.270%
Transaction Fees - Gumroad -$16.15 -$18.85-17%
Transaction Fees - Stripe -$249.85 -$347.01-39%
Marketing - Cheatography - Social Media -$260.00 -$260.000%
Marketing - - Copywriter -$997.09 -$997.090%
Marketing - ApolloPad - Social Media -$260.00 -$260.000%
Share of Company Expenses -$263.24 -$263.240%
Coworking Space -$34.75 -$34.750%
Total-$2,854.61 -$2,252.83+21%


Item Last Month This Month
Revenue $6,608.61 $8,728.80+32%
Expenses -$2,854.61 -$2,252.83+21%
Profit $3,754.00 $6,475.97+73%

Next Targets

Target Timescale Progress
$6,000/mo profit Short (2016) 108%
$8,000/mo profit Medium (2017) 81%
$10,000/mo profit Long (2018) 65%

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